Victoria’s Propanc Biopharma Inc. , a biopharmaceutical company developing novel cancer treatments for patients suffering from recurring and metastatic cancer, today announced that the results from a small trial of just 18 rectal cancer patients in complete remission using an immunotherapy called dostarlimab are “impressive,” whilst acknowledging there’s more work to be done.
Propanc Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder, Dr Julian Kenyon MD, MB, ChB, believes that the field’s biggest challenge remains that immunotherapies work inconsistently across cancers. Oncologists estimate a response rate of 20% across cancer types, according to the Wall Street Journal (“WSJ”). The drugs can wipe out cancers from some people, but fail to work for others. It is also uncertain whether the cancer may eventually return once a patient is in remission, even after a prolonged period of time.
Immunotherapies like dostarlimab, known as a checkpoint inhibitor, seek to inhibit key regulators of the immune system that when stimulated, reduces the body’s immune response to fight cancer. Given that immunotherapies target specific gene sequences, it often means they can encounter resistance, due to mutations that occur and genetic variation even within the primary tumor of a patient. As a result, Dr Cercek, from Memorial Sloan Kettering, who conducted the study for dostarlimab, estimates only 10% of rectal cancer patients and about 4% of all cancers will respond to treatment, according to the WSJ.
“For many cancers, multiple factors can drive growth, making it hard to effectively match one biomarker, or a particular gene sequence, to a single drug. On the other hand, a therapeutic approach like our lead product candidate, PRP, which alters the characteristics of the cancer cell, by enforcing it to express proteins it normally wouldn’t, means the treatment is less likely to encounter resistance through mutations, which is what we have observed in the lab as well as in clinical practice,” said Dr Julian Kenyon.
About Propanc Biopharma
Propanc Biopharma, Inc. (the “Company”) is developing a novel approach to prevent recurrence and metastasis of solid tumors by using pancreatic proenzymes that target and eradicate cancer stem cells in patients suffering from pancreatic, ovarian and colorectal cancers.
(Source: Biospace.com, 22nd June 2022)